The intersection of wealth and family ties presents an array of legal issues that require an extensive knowledge of the law, considerable forethought, and a great deal of sensitivity. Without proper planning for the future and protection of assets, individuals and families are threatened with losing a significant amount of their legacy to taxation and personal lawsuits.
Ranked Tier One in the United States in Trusts and Estates Law by U.S. News – Best Lawyers, Akerman has built an integrated team of lawyers experienced in helping individuals and families craft legal strategies designed to protect and pass on their wealth while minimizing the possibility of future legal action. From wills and revocable living trusts to irrevocable trusts, transfer of businesses to family members, family limited partnerships and private foundations, and other charitable planning, our lawyers work closely with clients to substantially reduce transfer taxes so that succeeding generations can receive more of the family wealth. We also integrate appropriate asset protection strategies as part of the client's overall estate plan to preserve the estate during the client's lifetime and afterward. While myriad family dynamics are often a source for conflict in complex cases, we are effective at devising legal strategies to address them and prevent legal action.
Our lawyers are often engaged to serve as a trustee, personal representative, or guardian, which requires a thorough knowledge of complex state and federal regulatory laws, as well as the underlying laws applicable to the fiduciary relationship. We also provide advice to fiduciaries named in wills and trusts on administering estates and trusts, minimizing taxes, investing assets, and distributing assets to the appropriate beneficiaries.
Our team is experienced in all aspects of family and matrimonial law. We strive to achieve the most efficient dissolution of a marriage possible by reaching a settlement at an early stage, preserving the assets, minimizing the emotional burden, and limiting the negative impacts on any children involved. Should a case proceed to trial, we represent our client's interests in order to reach a resolution as efficiently as possible. We are also experienced in drafting prenuptial and postnuptial agreements to manage family wealth and business interests, taking into account the complex details of the parties’ financial, business, estate planning, and personal situations.